ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

ConWebWatch: home | archive/search | about | primer | shop

Saturday, April 22, 2023
MRC Whines It Got Busted For Pushing Fact-Free Narrative
Topic: Media Research Center

In between pushing the baseless narrative that "woke" policies caused Silicon Valley Bank to fail and fervently hoping the failure would have tanked the economy so Biden would be blamed for it and thus lose the 2024 presidential election, the Media Research Center found time to whine some more about fact-checkers. Tim Graham spent a March 24 post complaining that the Associated Press busted it for spreading the false narrative of "wokeness" being the downfall of these banks by posting an earlier clip of Bernie Marcus making the claim:

Beware those “independent fact-checkers” when they throw the allegation “Missing context.” This can translate as: “not enough liberal context.”

We discovered this on our own Facebook page, which was flagged for "Missing context" on the failure of Silicon Valley Bank:

But when we clicked on “See why,” it wasn’t a defense of their fractured SVB “context-checking.” It was a generic "Help" page. 


So a lame "missing context" flag impairs our ability to share a conservative message. Bernie Marcus isn't even mentioned in the actual AP "Fact Check" article.

The rest of the post is a back-and-forth between the MRC and AP in which the MRC did not back up Marcus' claims about wokeness killing the bank -- only that Marcus was expressing an opinion, and that "Mr Marcus is a highly successful businessman and is entitled to share an opinion on this." But even a "highly successful businessman" should not be immune from having to back up what he says and from being called out when there's no evidence to support the claims he makes -- and the MRC has a responsibility to not repeat false claims merely because they fit a partisan narrative. Rather than behaving responsibly, Graham played the victim: "It's downright comical that AP would explicitly write us that 'missing context' means 'no liberal opinion included.' AP and other liberal outlets leave out any conservative rebuttal in 'news' stories on a daily basis."

If Graham doesn't want to be fact-checked, he and the MRC should stop spreading false and misleading things.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:36 AM EDT
WND's Root: Literally Everything Is Evidence Of A Stolen Election
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Wayne Allyn Root used his Feb. 17 WorldNetDaily column to declare that the evidence that the 2020 presidential election was "stolen" is ... everything that doesn't involve the 2020 election:

To me the proof the 2020 election was stolen is the state of the nation. Open your eyes. The consequences of a stolen election are all around us.

The supply chain is crippled. Highways, ports and infrastructure are crumbling. Blue states are banning trucks from the roads. Grocery prices are skyrocketing. Egg farms are burning to the ground. Eggs cost $10 per dozen – if you can find them. Over 100 food plants have burned to the ground in the past year.

Trains are derailing. The East Palestine, Ohio, train derailment may be the worst ecological disaster in U.S. history. Experts are calling it "our Chernobyl." There is a mushroom cloud of deadly chemicals floating over the farm belt. Animals are dying. Fish are dead. People are sick. And it just happens to have poisoned hundreds of thousands of acres of prime Midwest farmland.

The same exact thing that's happening to food and farmland is happening to energy. Under former President Donald Trump we had energy independence and cheap, plentiful energy. Under President Joe Biden we have soaring gas and electricity prices, energy shortages and depletion of our national fuel reserve. In the middle of this, our government is desperate to ban gas stoves.

Our border is wide open, with millions of migrants pouring through. I believe all of them will require cradle-to-grave welfare and many of them are criminals. How many are terrorists? And through that border comes drugs. Fentanyl alone kills over 100,000 Americans per year. It sure seems like someone wants Americans dead. I and many others believe Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandates are causing "sudden death" and cardiac arrest by the thousands per day. Read the headlines. Death rates are the highest in history. More children and young athletes are dropping dead suddenly than ever before in our lifetimes. Yet blue states are now mandating COVID-19 vaccines for your children to attend school. And our federal government is compiling a list of the unvaccinated. This won't end well.

Chinese balloons are sent to intimidate us. Russian warplanes are buzzing our borders. Russia is threatening nuclear war. China is ready to invade Taiwan, and $85 billion of military equipment was left in Afghanistan. The rest has been shipped off to Ukraine. Our military is in disarray, short on equipment, riddled with poor morale and unable to attract recruits.

Biden has based the economy on equity, social justice, diversity, LGBTQ and climate change. Result? Massive inflation is decimating the middle class. The national debt is exploding. So is the homeless population. So is violent crime and retail theft. Cities run by Democrats look like war zones filled with zombies.

The black national anthem opens our Super Bowl, dividing our nation. Meanwhile there isn't one black child able to do math at grade level in over 50 Chicago area schools. Insanity reigns.

Conservative voices are suspended, banned, silenced or fired for our political beliefs. Free speech is being eradicated.

The FBI and DOJ are persecuting PTA parents, conservatives and Christians, while woke district attorneys release violent criminals.

Conservative TV stations like Newsmax and OAN are removed from our airwaves.

And whether it's government, media, Hollywood or schools, our entire society is now about LGBTQ and transgender ideology. It's 24/7 brainwashing and propaganda.

Our president of the United States is clearly compromised, corrupted and owned by China. A Democratic U.S. senator has checked into the hospital for depression. And the former director of nuclear waste for the Energy Department is a man who dresses as a woman, now under indictment for stealing women's luggage.

Our country is a freaking mess. A shell of its former self, in free fall. The people in charge could star in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest."

This is the purposeful destruction of America and the great American middle class – in only two short years since an illegitimate, corrupt, brain-dead president was placed into power.

The humiliating state of our nation is all the proof you need of a stolen election. The evil all around us is the proof. In only two short years, a stolen election has unleashed the gates of hell. This was all a plan ...

And it's being carried out to perfection.

This would seem to be a roundabout way for Root to admit that he has no actual credible evidence of the 2020 election being tampered with. If everything is "evidence" -- including someone singing a song at the Super Bowl and a business decision about a TV channel -- then there is no evidence at all.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:57 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, April 22, 2023 1:59 AM EDT
Friday, April 21, 2023
MRC's Jean-Pierre-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch
Topic: Media Research Center

Kevin Tober got his usual malicious shots in at Karine Jean-Pierre in his writeup of the March 22 White House press briefing:

Once again, the first half of Wednesday’s White House press briefing featured National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby to serve as a crutch for incompetent White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre. Yet even during what WMAL radio talk show host Vince Coglianese referred to as “the grownup press briefing” there was at least one noteworthy moment. 

This came from Fox Business correspondent Grady Trimble who pointed out how the Biden administration seems to be talking out of both sides of its mouth when it comes to the dangers of the Chinese spyware app TikTok.


Once Kirby was gone and the children’s version of the briefing began with the inept Jean-Pierre, things got more interesting. 

First up was the Associated Press’s Aamer Madhani who wanted Jean-Pierre to weigh in once again on Florida Republican Ron DeSantis’s anti-grooming legislation.

Funny, we thought the MRC hated it when the media didn't call the Florida law by its official name. Tober went on to whine about "the most pathetic moment of the entire briefing, when USA Today reporter Rebecca Morin (who has pronouns in her Twitter bio) tattled on Texas Governor Greg Abbott and basically begged the Justice Department to sue him for daring to secure his state’s border." Tober didn't explain what relevance declaring one's pronouns has to, well, anything. He then moved on to the Fox News PR segment of his post for the MRC favorite biased reporter and mancrush:

Then came the moment everyone was waiting for: “Doocy Time” (as NewsBusters’ Curtis Houck has coined). 

Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy didn’t waste time. He asked the most important question of the day which was regarding the Biden crime family’s mounting scandals: “House Oversight says they’ve got bank records showing a Chinese energy company paying three Biden family members through a third party. What were they paid for?”

Jean-Pierre played dumb and demurred, “I don’t even where to begin to even answer that question because, again, it’s been lies and lies and inaccuracy for the past couple years.”

Doocy moved on and asked about the deteriorating relationship between the United States and China: “Xi told Putin at their meeting, ‘Change is coming that hasn’t happened in 100 years. And we are driving this change together.’ What do you think that means?”

Again, Jean-Pierre had no answer. “You would have to ask them,” she replied.

Houck returned to write up the March 27 briefing to whine that reporters at the briefing talked about the gun massacre in Nashville earlier that day:

Monday’s White House press briefing came after initial reports on the deadly shooting at Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee that left six people (three students, three adults) dead and thus gave reporters to flaunt their liberal views. 

Most notably, NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell channeled Rahm Emanuel by ghoulishly speculating the reports of the shooter being a woman could represent a “breakthrough” against those backward Americans stuck in their “gun culture.”

Houck was so focused on defending guns that he forgot to insult Jean-Pierre.

UPDATE: Houck also whined in a separate article about the March 27 briefing that reporters asked about the gun massacre at a private school in Nashville that day, complaining that reporters "flaunt[ed] their liberal views" by asking about gun regulations and whether the fact that the shooter was a woman might change things: "Jean-Pierre declined to comment on the gender because she wanted to remain 'mindful' despite having seen 'those reportings [sic].' On guns, she said Biden would 'continue to take action to reduce gun violence because this is a priority for him and he wants to save lives' and hoped Congress would 'enact common gun law reforms'."

Posted by Terry K. at 9:44 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, April 24, 2023 7:57 PM EDT
CNS Columnists Cheer Lawsuit Against Abortion Pill
Topic: has been promoting right-wing efforts to demonize and ban the abortion drug mifepristone, and that effort continued in commentaries in advance of a court ruling in one case seeking to outlaw the drug. A Feb. 16 column by Bill Donohue used the pejorative "chemical abortion" to describe the pills and cited anti-abortion activist Ingrid Skop (whom CNS has also promoted) to fearmonger about mifepristone and "the prevalence of non-doctors performing abortions across the country."

A March 6 column by Lathan Watts of the right-wing activist group Alliance Defending Freedom parroted the arguments used by anti-abortion activisrts in the lawsuit, which thte ADF is taking part in:

The FDA never studied the safety of the drugs under the labeled conditions of use, ignored the potential impacts of the hormone-blocking regimen on the developing bodies of adolescent girls, disregarded the substantial evidence that chemical abortion drugs cause more complications than surgical abortions, and eliminated necessary safeguards for pregnant girls and women who undergo the dangerous drug regimen.


ADF attorneys have participated in multiple interviews with major news outlets covering the litigation, including CBS, PBS, and The Washington Post.

Nowhere in the final published versions of their coverage did the journalists at these outlets mention the many women who have died from taking these drugs, nor did they report the experiences that our frontline doctors shared with them about how America’s emergency rooms are treating women harmed by dangerous chemical abortion drugs. Not once did their news coverage include the FDA repeal of a reporting requirement for non-fatal complications, suggesting willful ignorance to the dangers unleashed on American women. And there was nary a mention of the bureaucratic stonewalling for 14 years that prevented litigation until recently. Instead, the phrases “safe and effective” and “on the market for 20 years” appear multiple times.

In fact, the death risk from mifepristone is much lower than that from penicillin or Viagra. Nevertheless, he ranted:

A government accountable to its citizens and a free and independent press working to assure this accountability are two vitally essential elements of a republic. This lawsuit and the resulting media coverage demonstrate the public’s distrust is more than justified. Tragically, this is far more serious than typical bureaucratic incompetence and media bias; lives are at stake.

How many more women must die, knock on death’s door, or risk serious injury for the FDA to abandon its “safe and effective” mantra? And when will the national news media summon the courage and integrity to ask them?

Editor Terry Jeffrey spent his March 8 column hyping the lawsuit, which started by huffing that "In September 2000, not long before Clinton finished his second term in office, the FDA approved the use of abortion-inducing drugs in the United States." He concluded with an anti-abortion screed:

The administration completely ignores the fact that not only is there a death associated with the use of these drugs, it is the very purpose of these drugs.

An unborn child is a human being. A drug that is designed to abort the life of that unborn child is a drug designed to kill a human being.

This is what the FDA approved when it approved drugs that induce abortion: the killing of a human being.

Commentary editor Georgiana Constantin-Parke used a March 21 column to again promote Skop's activist attacks on mifepristone. She also complained that "Medical abortions apparently carry with them a risk of complications four times higher than surgical abortions" without mentioning that surgical abortions are also being targeted by anti-abortion activists, and hyped the alleged "terrible dangers" without disclosing that other drugs have higher risks. She concluded with her own anti-abortion rant:

But for those looking to politicize the abortion debate, nothing is too nonsensical or dangerous to attempt or legalize. They seem to leisurely sit on the sidelines and watch the effects of their policies: dead babies, traumatized and dead women, a polarized society, a manipulated narrative and populace. They teach other to raise clothing hangers and shout “never again!” or “keep abortion safe” while ensuring that the procedure is in fact increasingly turned into a horrific, traumatizing, and life threatening experience.

Constantin-Parke didn't mention that anti-abortion activists are the ones making it a "horrific, traumatizing, and life threatening experience" by imposing needless regulation on the procedure that are driven much more by ideology than medicine -- much like CNS' own commentaries are doing.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:36 PM EDT
WND's Lively Remains A Trump Election Denier
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Even though Scott Lively thinks Donald Trump doesn't hate LGBT people enough, he still believes in the myth of election fraud and that Trump should still be president. Lively began his March 13 column -- headlined "Trump shouldn't have to run to gain back the presidency" -- by complaining that Trump lawyer was censured in Colorado for her election lies:

This past week one of the last loose ends from the 2020 election coup was tied up by the conspirators: the neutralizing of Jenna Ellis, arguably the most effective of the Trump attorneys who sought justice for the American electorate in the courts. The media widely but falsely reported that she admitted to lying about the election in a deal she made with the State Bar of Colorado to keep her law license.

What seems to the general public to be a slam-dunk victory for the "cleanest election in U.S. history" choir (filthy scoundrels all) was in fact the administrative equivalent of a plea-bargain in which an innocent party facing certain defeat in court admits to a lesser charge and consequence to avoid a much harsher sentence. We've all seen how this works in Hollywood courtroom dramas and Ellis is a real life example. There was no way the leftist Colorado Bar Association and courts were going to let her get away with challenging the election results. Per a 2020 post-game wrap-up by KDVR in Denver, "Tuesday night was a good night for Democrats across Colorado. Democrats now control the governor's office, the state House, the state Senate. … Hickenlooper's win also gives Democrats control of both Colorado U.S. Senate seats in addition to their 4-3 advantage in the U.S. House."

You get the picture, but an apparently fair-minded judge bucked the leftist mob to broker a compromise (censure, not disbarment) so she wouldn't lose her license to practice. In any case, what Ellis signed was in no way an admission that she "lied" – a point she vigorously argued on Twitter after the fact:

"The politically-motivated Left failed miserably in their attempt to destroy me. They're now trying to falsely discredit me by saying I admitted I lied. That is FALSE. I would NEVER lie. Lying requires INTENTIONALLY making a false statement. I never did that, nor did I stipulate to or admit that." You can and should read the full statement here.

But as one observer pointed out, Ellis admitted to knowingly making misrepresentations, which most normal people would call lies.

Lively then went on to spout his own conspiracy theory about the 2020 election, unencumbered by facts:

Let me add my own un-parsed perspective here on behalf of Ellis (whom I have never met nor communicated with) and every other Trump defender in America who is constrained by politics and the risk of severe punishment. TRUMP WON the 2020 election by an overwhelming majority. We all know it, despite the relentless narrative-spinning, witness intimidation and criminal cover-ups by our corrupt government and media.

To eject Trump from the White House, the American Uniparty and its globalist allies around the world orchestrated the largest and most extensive campaign of fraud in the history of the world: the Purple Revolution. Their multi-faceted, multi-stage conspiracy included and integrated:

  • the Russian Collusion Hoax;
  • two back-to-back baseless impeachments;
  • the genocidal, global COVID-19 Plandemic (with all its many sub-components including lockdowns and coerced "immunizations" with poison);
  • the creation of massive new election fraud infrastructure (including neutralization of election safeguards by corrupt courts and legislatures, universal mail-out balloting and harvesting, Zuckerbucks and unmonitored leftist-controlled ballot counting processes);
  • the de facto takeover of Big Tech by deep-state intelligence agencies for use as censorship and propaganda machinery;
  • the outrageous staging of the J6 "insurrection" (to prevent a vote to postpone certification pending congressional investigation, which made Mike Pence's treason in certifying the false Biden presidency all the more heinous); and
  • the post-election intentional triggering (through un-ignorable provocation of Russia) of the Ukraine war as a cover-up facilitator and foreign distraction from the domestic fallout to the coup.

But despite ALL of that, Trump won in a landslide, and a steadily increasing percentage of the public openly admits it.

I've had my disagreements with President Trump – mostly regarding "Operation Warp Speed" and his endorsement of some aspects of the LGBT agenda. But despite these serious policy flaws, Donald Trump is by far the best candidate we have to overthrow the deep state and bring the real America back from the abyss.

Of course Lively threw Ukraine in there, given his position as a self-proclaimed Putin apologist. Lively conclucded that all other Republicans should step aside and help Trump regain was is purportedly rightfully his:

For the sake of their own political futures and the rescue of the world from globalist tyranny, Ron DeSantis and the rest of the Republican primary field should ceremoniously stand down, forcefully condemn the coup criminals and endorse Trump's already-earned second term unequivocally. The primary season should be treated as a war-time national coalescence behind Trump and getting a massive head start on assembling the most extensive "get-out-the-vote" army in U.S. history, with DeSantis and other worthy contenders serving as the Eisenhowers, Pattons and MacArthurs of that effort.

Whether or not that happens, Jenna Ellis remains a national heroine despite her plea bargain. And Donald Trump remains the (as yet uncertified) president of the United States with four more years to serve, pending the upcoming eviction of the present White House squatter.

Yep, a total Trump dead-ender.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:17 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE -- Newsmax's Victimhood Blitz: Endgame
Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax continued to loudly complain that DirecTV dropped it -- until it started seriously negotiating to return there. It was then apparently forced, as a condition of its return, to walk back all those partisan attacks that it was the victim of "censorship." Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 10:20 AM EDT
Thursday, April 20, 2023
Anti-Drag Hate Continues At The MRC
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center kept its rage against drag queens burning hot as 2023 progressed. Matt Philbin spent a Jan. 27 post reacting to a drag show during halftime at a pro basketball game in a freakout filled with toxic masculinity:

Well, the Milwaukee Bucks came out of the closet this week, becoming the first NBA team to declare itself queer. 

At Wednesday’s “Pride Night” game, the team gave attendees a "Bucks Pride" scarf and beanie, and announced that the Milwaukee PD officially recognized their arena as a terrific place to be gay. Team members made videos about how great the gay is, and at halftime they ceded the court to gyrating dudes in women’s clothes for a drag show. Apparently, they found time to play basketball too. All in a night’s work.


Well, if you knew it was Pride Night and you bought your family tickets anyway, you don’t much care what your kids are exposed to. And since the whole point of Pride Night is to advertise the team’s virtue, it’s hard to imagine someone not getting word before hand. 

So please join me in congratulating the Bucks for their courage, wishing them well as they continue to live their truth as the first gay pro basketball team.

Philbin seems a bit insecure in his masculinity if all he can come up with is a childish "you're so gay" insult.

Later in the day, Philbin cheered anti-drag laws in North Dakota:

We’ve reached the point where we need laws to keep men in women’s clothes from performing lewd dance routines in front of kids. Isn’t progress great? 

The North Dakota House voted 79-13 to make it illegal to do drag shows with children present. According to Fox News, “Rep. Brandon Prichard, a Republican from Bismarck, said Thursday he proposed the bill after learning of drag shows performed in front of children, including at least once on the Capitol steps.”

At leastone … 

So the question is, who were the 13 reps that think pervs and kids belong together?

Philbin did not explain who indoctrinated him with the hateful belief that all drag queen are "pervs" who only do "lewd dance routines."

The MRC's chief dragphobe and transphobe, Tierin-Rose Mandelburg, got to mix both hateful obsessions in a Feb. 3 post that went on a tirade against  "drag queen turned trannie" Jinkx Monsoon, who landed a part in a  Broadway musical. Mandelburg quickly descended into your typical right-wing "drag queens are coming for your children" fearmongering:

The two then got into the growing "backlash" that drag queens have been receiving. “Drag has slayed and sashayed its way into mainstream entertainment,” [CBS correspondent Christina] Ruffini began, “it’s also become a target.” Violence against anyone is always wrong, but it's important to point out that drag only became an issue when drag queens got out of their own lane and got into the lane where children exist. 

If you wanna do drag, go ahead. You’re weird but I mean, feel free. However, the second a drag queen enters a space with children present, THAT’s when the line needs to be drawn. Children should not be subjected to such a twisted way of life and told to accept it as normal.

Whether its children attending “family-friendly” drag shows where performers execute provocative dance moves and lay spread eagle on the floor, or where drag queens host fashion shows for “drag youth,” or drag queen story hour, “drag” and “children” should never intersect.

Why is Mandelburg so afraid of drag queens? She offers no evidence that drag queens pose any sort of realisitic threat to children -- after all, children in the 1950s weren't traumatized by Milton Berle in drag on national TV (which wouldn't be allowed under some states' anti-drag laws).And one has to think that Mandelburg doesn't really mean that "violence against anyone is always wrong" when she's suggesting it would be permissible against a drag queen who got even remotely close to a child.

Kevin Tober spent a Feb. 6 post lashing out at TV panelists -- one of whom is one of the MRC's favorite targets -- who pointed out the scare tacics behind the right-wing anti-drag crusade:

On Monday's edition of CNN's Erin Burnett OutFront, host Erin Burnett and her panelists tore into Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis for the grave sin of holding companies accountable that seek to sexually exploit and indoctrinate children for the left's political gain. Most notably, panelist and co-host of The View Alyssa Farah Griffin defended parents who want to abuse their children by bringing them to drag shows and beclowned herself by admitting that she "love[s] drag." 

Burnett turned to left-wing radical Van Jones on the drag queen story hour topic and falsely claimed: “this is not a big thing, okay.”

She then added: “But to the extent that it is something that comes up, there are a lot of parents who may not be Republican or right-wing Republican or whoever who might be uncomfortable with that. Is it a smart issue to pick it? So in other words, so that you as a Democrat aren't put in a position of defending why 6-year-olds should be allowed to go to drag queens?”

Jones deflected from the question posed to him and whined: “It's cynical. And it's the kind of cynical thing a bully does. It speaks poorly to his character. I don't think that the biggest threat to American children is some drag queen thing.”


Finally, the most insane commentary was predictably given by The View co-host Alyssa Farah Griffin. 

At first, it started off promising when Griffin said she’s “not comfortable with the idea of a 6-year-old being at a drag show.”  

But then it took a turn for the worse when she embarrassed herself by admitting “I love drag. I'm 33. So, let's not ban it.”

“Let’s not have the heavy hand of the state come in and make a decision for parents. This seems like conservatism 101. Let the parent opt-in to what they want their kids to have exposure to,” Griffin lectured. 

If that’s "conservatism 101" then conservatism deserves to die a swift death. But luckily that’s not what conservatism stands for. 

This shouldn't be a political issue. Children don't belong at drag shows. Period.

Tober didn't dispute that his fellow right-wingers are using bully tactics against drag queens. And, like his fellow co-workers, he failed to expain why he believes all drag queens are all inherently evil who must ber purged from society and hidden away lest chidren see them and learn not to hate the way their parents do. And if Tober and his pals support trying to legislate drag out of existence, they're the ones who are politicizing things.

Mandelburg returned to freak out in a Feb. 9 post:

CNN is doing its part for the drag queen lobby.

The network's Erica Hill did a puff segment Thursday morning with Reverend Todd Vetter and Jonathan Hamilt, Executive Director of Drag Story Hour, to protest the GOP-backed legislation that aims to protect kids from the obscenity of drag shows. In a roughly six-minute exchange on live TV, the trio spewed lies and woke propaganda about the need for drag in kids' lives -- and in the lives of Christians.

Vetter, of the First Congregational Church of Madison, Connecticut, put on a drag bingo event to raise money for his youth group to attend a mission trip to build homes for people. Naturally, he received some backlash but he kept it up He claimed it wasn’t a “political statement” and insisted it was to signal that his church was an “open and affirming” place.

Being judgmental about anytthing and everything that offends her far-right sensibilities and ideology is, of course, Mandelburg's brand. She then imposed her rigid and narrow view of Christianity on the situation, insisting that Jesus would never hang with drag queens:

Vetter said the experience was “an affirmation of who we are as a church, how we think about the commandment to love our neighbor and I think it, whatever lessons the community has taken away from this is -- I think, positive -- but it is a great affirmation for us of who we are and who we are called to be.”

So his flock is called to hang around with perverts?

While the Bible does say to love our neighbor and that we are not to judge others, it also commands us to walk as Jesus would. If Jesus were running a church in the U.S. today, he wouldn’t be using men in dress-up clothes and wearing boob attachments to raise money for a youth mission trip. Vetter is enabling drag behavior and exposing kids to it.

Mandelburg did the stock right-wing ranting about drag queen story hours: "Most regular story-hour’s don’t and shouldn't have men with fake boobs wearing short skirts and makeup." She then went on to justify anti-drag hate by using the Orwellian framing of calling it "pro-child":

He claimed that people who are in opposition of kids being in spaces with drag queens are simply homophobic and transphobic. 

Hill then went on a tangent bashing the Republican-introduced law that would help protect kids from the immorality at drag shows. The law indicates that parents may be charged if they bring their kids to drag events, as they should, as well as insists that restaurants and bars that host the drag shows to register as sexually oriented businesses ... I mean, duh.

The bill isn’t “anti-drag,” but instead is “pro-child.” If you want to dress up in drag, go ahead, you’re a freak but not hurting anyone but yourself. But the second drag and children intersect or enter into the same place, a thick line needs to be drawn. 

Kids should not be exposed to drag. Period.

Again, Mandelburg didn't explain exactly how any child -- or any adult -- is threatened in any way by drag queens.

UPDATE: One we overlooked earlier: A Dec. 22 post by Brad Wilmouth complained that right-wing dragphobia was called out, huffing that a PBS show "devoted a segment to an LGBT activist who has been defending drag shows against efforts by conservatives to restrict their ability to involve children" and that the host "made sure to label critics of drag shows as 'far-right' as she set up the interview." Wilmouth didn't dispute the accuracy of the label.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:34 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, April 21, 2023 11:50 AM EDT
WND Columnist Tries To Defend Trump Call To Ga. Official
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily columnist Jonathon Moseley is getting desperate in is attempt to defend Donald Trump. His March 1 column was dedicated to attacking the Georgia investigation into Trump's actions after the 2020 election he lost, insisting that Trump "a perfectly appropriate phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on or about Jan. 3, 2021. This is an astonishingly precise parallel to Trump's phone call to Ukraine and the first impeachment trial." He went on to huff:

This particular scheme out of many is the false claim that Trump tried to pressure Raffensperger to "overturn" (that is, get correct) the results of the 2020 election for president in Georgia. However, the discussions of these events are buried amidst anti-Trump hysteria. Finding the most basic details is very difficult. It is distressing that Trump's Georgia lawyers are doing so little to defend him. The effective lawyers helping Trump are Christina Bobb, Harmeet Dhillon, Alina Habba and Jenna Ellis. And Rudy Giuliani was very assertive and a fighter. Others seem to be asleep.

Moseley spent a lot of time explaining that the call was obligatory ounder certain civil procedure rules and included other lawyers on both sides and not just Trump and Raffensperger, which we don't recall anyone questioning. After making a couple points about that and alleged editing, Moseley huffed:

Third, in every election-related contest, it is a requirement to show that the challenged votes or category of votes could change the outcome. Donald Trump is heard on the call ticking off the categories and votes in each category, to show exactly that: As required, Trump was showing how the outcome of the election could have been different if the errors in the election were corrected.

Fourth, what we do not hear on the phone call is Trump saying to Raffensperger "Ignore the voting results, make me win anyway." Notice the substance of Trump's remarks. Trump lists the errors in the election and how many votes each one would have affected. Raffensperger responds that his numbers are different. Trump asks how are the numbers different – these are numbers we got from your office, can you tell us the correct numbers? In violation of Rules 26(e) to (f), Raffensperger refuses. Exchanging that kind of information immediately or delivering it under a plan is the purpose of Rule 26. Georgia's secretary of state was in contempt of court by not answering as to his position on the correct voting totals in each problem category. Raffensperger's intransigence is what jumps out.

But notice how the discussion is about which numbers are correct. There is no discussion about finding a way to make Trump win in spite of the vote totals. The entire discussion is about what the challenged votes actually are, in truth, by category. And that's the requirement under Rule 26.

In fact, the transcript of the call shows that Gergia officials challenged Trump on the false claims he was making about the Georgia numbers; Ryan Germany of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation told him: "Let me tell you what we are seeing. What we’re seeing is not at all what you’re describing, these are investigators from our office, these are investigators from GBI, and they’re looking and they’re good. And that’s not what they’re seeing." Indeed, Trump's numbers proved to be false, not the ones from Georgia officials.

Also, Moseley doesn't include a single direct quote from Trump in his column,which suggests that he's trying to gloss over what Trump actually said.Trump did not have to explicitly say to Raffensperger "Ignore the voting results, make me win anyway" for that desire to be made crystal clear. Trump did say that "All I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have because we won the state"; it's quite easy to infer intent.

Moseley went on to complain that "The problem is that prosecutors only present one side to the grand jury, and the grand jury won't know the reasons why the phone call was innocent." Funny how the legal process is a terrible thing when prominent Republicans face accountability for their apparent crimes.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:17 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, April 20, 2023 10:14 PM EDT
MRC Promotes COVID Misinformer Malone
Topic: Media Research Center

As one more part of its newly fawning coverage of CPAC, a March 7 post by Paiten Iselin and Gabriela Pariseau bestowed right-wing victimhood on a fellow traveler:

The harms of Big Tech’s COVD-19 censorship continue to ripple throughout America, vaccine scientist Dr. Robert Malone told MRC Free Speech America.

“People have been prevented from obtaining informed consent because of the censorship,” Malone said at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Saturday. Malone is an inventor of the mRNA vaccine technology used in COVID-19 vaccines. His concerns about COVID-19 vaccines repeatedly landed him in hot water with the Big Tech COVID-19 narrative police.

Malone noted that online censorship has a tangible – and potentially lethal – impact offline as well. “[P]atients aren’t getting that preventative care because the physicians are being, and the patients are being, blocked from understanding about it, and that means there'll be additional avoidable excess deaths in the future,” he said.

Malone warned of the dangers of silencing scientific discussion online. “The consequence of [COVID-19 censorship] is that physicians who might otherwise be able to provide preventative care to their patients are not aware of what the risks are,” he said.

Platforms including Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube have all attempted to silence Malone’s posts or media appearances.

In December of 2021, Twitter suspended Malone for allegedly sharing “misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19.” LinkedIn also ousted Malone who wrote, “No explanations, no warnings were given.”

Big Tech’s repeated censorship of COVID-19 information showcases the platforms’ aversion to truth, debate and scientific discussion.

In fact, Malone has been repeatedly exposed as a spreader of COVID-related misinformation (which is why WorldNetDaily loves him). That starts with Iselin and Pariseau's claim that he is  "n inventor of the mRNA vaccine technology"; in fact, all he did was some early reserarch into the subject. As we've documented, Malone has attacked the vaccine he "invented"; signed the "Great Barrington Declaration," which advoacated for dangerous "herd immunity" at a time when no vaccines were yet availble and COVID was killing thousands daily; and his new book has a foreword by wacky anti-vaxxer Robert Kennedy Jr. It was a misinformation-laden interview Malone did with podcaster Joe Rogan that played a key role in the MRC rushing to defend Rogan last year.

But Iselin and Pariseau don't want to talk about how Malone has deliberately misled people -- he's the MRC's kind of manufactured victim, and that's all that matters: "Big Tech’s repeated censorship of COVID-19 information showcases the platforms’ aversion to truth, debate and scientific discussion." And, of course, they named Malone's partner in COVID misinformation, Peter McCullough, as another purported victim.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:52 PM EDT
CNS Jim Jordan & Mark Levin Stenography Watch

Let's see how did in serving up stenography for its favorite non-Ted Cruz right-wingers, shall we? Here's what CNS did on behalf of Republican Rep. Jim Jordan in the first three months of 2023:

That's just seven articles, a little off the pace of previous years. And, of course, none of them mention his alleged failure to do anything about a doctor who had been accused of sexual abuse by wrestlers on a college team where Jordan was a coach. CNS also gave Jordan promotion in a Jan. 6 article quoting GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz touting Jordan as a "trusted" conservative who would make a good House speaker.

Another CNS fave, right-wing radio host Mark Levin, did a little better:

That's eight articles, which is also off the pace of previous years. And, yes, CNS wants you to think that Levin's wife running in a benefit race is "news."

Posted by Terry K. at 1:45 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, April 20, 2023 11:03 AM EDT
Wednesday, April 19, 2023
MRC DeSantis Defense Brigade Watch
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's DeSantis Defense Brigade has continued to roll along as the MRC serves as the de facto rapid-response operation for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and his presumed presidential campaign. Kevin Tober spent a Feb. 21 post freaking out because someone used DeSantis tobesmirch the entire state of Florida with a description the MRC would be embracing if DeSantis was a Democrat:

As much as they say otherwise, MSNBC was terrified of Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis becoming president because they know he's a real threat to their leftist agenda. To them, Trump was an easy punching bag for ratings. More proof of this came on Tuesday night's edition of The ReidOut when guest host Jason Johnson leveled another nasty attack on DeSantis, this time sliming the entire state of Florida and it’s people in the process. 

The vile and bigoted attacks came when Johnson made his best case for why DeSantis was unelectable. "In my view, there are three states that you can't really run from if you're trying to win across America," Johnson proclaimed.

Continuing to illustrate his bizarre theory, Johnson explained: "You run from New York, you're too crazy, you're a liberal. You run from California, you're too crazy, you’re liberal, you’re trying to make sure I can’t get plastic straws. You run from Florida, it's all crystal meth and alligators. Right?" 

Realizing how much he stepped in it, Johnson quickly backtracked and said he was just saying that's simply the reputation of Florida. "I mean that's what people think. I'm not saying that that's the case. I’m saying those are sort of the national reputations of those states," he said.

"So when you see Ron DeSantis running and claiming that he's going do for America what he's done in Florida, it seems like that’d be a problem," Johnson ended by saying.

So annoyed was the MRC by that description of Florida -- and so desperate was it to distance DeSantis from that reputation -- that Tim Graham spent his podcast the next day complaining about it, with Tober as his guest:

Ron DeSantis is Public Enemy #1 on the left-wing TV networks, as he stands falsely accused of ending the teaching of slavery. On The Reidout, MSNBC guest host Jason Johnson said DeSantis can't successfully run for president from Florida, which is seen as the state of "crystal meth and alligators."

Is someone confusing actual Florida with an episode of Miami Vice? Do Joy's guest hosts need to sound as crazy as Joy?

Graham returned for a Feb. 27 post whining about a bad review of DeSantis' new book:

The folks at The New York Times Book Review would like you to believe they are the nation's premier evaluators of books, fiction and nonfiction. But the evidence shows the Times evaluates political books with a reliably partisan rancor or rapture, depending on which party it is. 

Take nonfiction book critic Jennifer Szalai's takedown of the new Ron DeSantis book The Courage to Be Free, headlined "Preaching Freedom, Ron DeSantis Leads By Cracking Down."

Szalai began by painting DeSantis as an insincere chameleon:


The review also mocked DeSantis for its lack of literary merit: "For the most part, The Courage to Be Free is courageously free of anything that resembles charisma, or a discernible sense of humor. While his first book was weird and esoteric enough to have obviously been written by a human, this one reads like a politician’s memoir churned out by ChatGPT."

This is a pattern at the eagerly partisan Times.

The eagerly partisan Graham offered no evidence to rebut the reviewer's take on the book.

There was plenty of lashing out at other criticism of DeSantis as well:

Even mocking obviously mockable things about DeSantis drew MRC disapproval. Mark Finkelstein huffed in a March 14 post:

MSNBC has been spewing red-hot hate of Ron DeSantis for years now. But it's gotten so silly that Joe Scarborough is now mocking the Florida governor for his throwing motion during a playing-catch interview with Fox News host Brian Kilmeade. 

Scarborough squealed "wheee" no fewer 11 than times this morning during a long opening segment he devoted to mocking Ron DeSantis. He said it was worse given that he had been on the baseball team at Yale. Joe also mocked DeSantis as a "goober" for keeping his suit jacket on during the throwing session.

Super sports analyst Scarborough, playing both regular-speed and slo-mo clips slammed DeSantis's throwing motion. And each time Scarborough did so, he accompanied it with a long "whee."

Scarborough suggested that DeSantis' motion was all the worse given that he had been on the baseball team at Yale.

Finkelstein even defended DeSantis' throwing action, as someone who's doing rapid response and not "media research" would do:

Note: Rather than being whee-worthy, my analysis says that DeSantis was intentionally taking something off his throws. He appeared to be standing rather close to Kilmeade. And judging by Brian's throwing motion, he is not an accomplished ballplayer. DeSantis likely didn't want to embarrass Brian by whipping a ball at him that he couldn't handle.

Now, if you want to smirk at a truly whee-worthy throwing motion, here's then-President Obama throwing out a first pitch.

Of course Finkelstein found a way to play whataboutism.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:38 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, April 19, 2023 10:39 PM EDT
Newsmax Touts Fringe Doctor Group's Anti-Transgender Claims
Topic: Newsmax

Michael Katz uncritically wrote in a Feb. 27 Newsmax article:

The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, a national organization of physicians in all specialties, warned that there are inherently unknown long-term risks to gender-affirming care for minors, and the consequences of removing normal, healthy organs are "generally irreversible."

On Saturday, the AAPS released a statement on "transgenderism" because, it said, "a majority of large and influential medical organizations have issued treatment guidelines for gender-affirming care, but there is strong opposition."

Also, the group recommended physicians and medical professionals refuse to be "mandated or coerced to participate in procedures to which they have ethical or scientific objections or which they believe would harm a patient."

The group noted "an explosive increase in persons who identify with the construct of gender different from sex, at an age where identity is easily malleable and brain development is not fully concluded."

Katz faied to tell his readers, however, that AAPS is a fringe-right group that puts politics before medicine -- and, thus, gets prominent play on right-wing websites like WorldNetDaily. It's a group of anti-vaxxers that spread misinformation about COVID, touted dubious treatments and fearmongered about vaccines. And as others have pointed out, AAPS hates trangender people, having previously called being transgender a "pathology," and it endorses anti-LGBT conversion therapy.

In other words, not a group that should be treated seriously -- but Newsmax wants you to believe otherwise.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:17 PM EDT
Disinformation Source WND Complains Of Being On Disinformation Blacklist
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily just loves playing victimhood when its years of dishonesty have consequences, and it has found a new way to do so. Bob Unruh detailed it in a Feb. 10 article:

A new report from the Washington Examiner has identified WND, a precedent-setter among online news sites that was founded back in 1997, is one among dozens of "conservative" news sites from which ad revenue is being blocked by a Microsoft subsidiary.

Among the false claims made against the sites is that they were peddling alleged "disinformation."

Other websites identified included the Washington Examiner itself, Daily Wire, Real Clear Politics, Hot Air, Newsmax, Daily Caller, Tea Party, Life News, MRCTV, Breitbart, Redstate, The Blaze and more.

As part of a series about groups tracking supposed "disinformation" and then discriminating against conservative opinions and reporting, the Examiner explained how Xandr, an advertising company that "subscribes to a left-leaning 'disinformation' group's secret blacklist," has been flagging those with comments with which it disagrees.

And it's been actively "taking steps to defund and deplatform them."


WND’s longtime vice president and managing editor, David Kupelian, is not surprised at all, revealing more of the back story: “In late 2020, three major international online ad companies that had long served ads on WND – our main source of revenue and sustenance – all suddenly decided, at almost the exact same time, to cancel WND in the run-up to the most important presidential election of our lifetimes. The ad companies blacklisting WND – namely Xandr, TripleLift and Teads – all cited vague breaches of their terms of service,  including, and I quote, ‘any content that is illegal or otherwise contrary to any applicable law, regulation, directive, guideline or order, including without limitation any misleading, unethical, obscene, defamatory, deceptive, gambling-related or hateful content,’ etc. So it has nothing to do with 'disinformation.' If they don’t like your politics, you’re cancelled.”

Kupelian is lying, of course. WND has distinguished itself as a reliable purveyor of disinformation, particularly about election fraud and COVID vaccines -- it has done more than enough to earn its place on a blacklist of discredited websites.

A few days later, Unruh wrote an article on how the Microsoft subsidiary apparently backed off the blackist, copying-and-pasting Kupelian's earlier quote into it. And it wouldn't be WND if Joseph Farah wasn't trying to monetize this victimhood, as he did in his Feb. 13 column:

The truth is, the onslaught of blacklisting, banning, demonetization and suppression by every means imaginable has been constant for eight years. What could we do in the face of such never-ending attacks on us?

We turned to our most important constituency – our beloved readers who turn to us for the truth.

And we continue to rely on reader support, but it's very difficult – because Google, by far the world's largest search engine, controls how many people SEE WND. So, as you can imagine, it's tough to survive the overwhelming forces arrayed against us.

Please consider helping WND to weather the ongoing attacks against us by making a generous tax-deductible donation to the nonprofit 501(c)(3) WND News Center.


Thank you so much for your past support – including those who were so generous toward the end of 2022, since you've kept us going through January. However, WND's financial needs continue to grow because of the kind of Biden-era, anti-conservative, anti-Christian Big Tech and woke advertising company bias toward us discussed above.

We feel sorry for any reader who thinks the only place they can turn to for "the truth" is WND.

Farah harped on the siguation again in his column two days later: "The situation is bleak – especially for a Christian company like WND. It's a double threat – conservative and Christian. Imagine!" It doesn't seem to have occurred to Farah that WND could avoid this situation by publishing factual information instead of fake news and conspiracy theories.

Unruh hyped other developments in the story that benefited right-wing media like WND:

Farah penned another freakout column in his Feb. 16 column:

The Department of State has funded a deep-pocketed "disinformation" tracking group that is secretly blacklisting and trying to defund conservative media.

The Global Disinformation Index, a British organization with two affiliated U.S. nonprofit groups, is feeding blacklists to ad companies with the intent of defunding and shutting down websites peddling alleged "disinformation," the Washington Examiner reports. This same "disinformation" group has received $330,000 from two State Department-backed entities linked to the highest levels of government.

Just a reminder – that's illegal in America.

Actually, it's not illegal to point out how some websites traffic in disinformation. Farah rehashed WND's victimhood in his Feb. 20 column:

For more than eight years, since 2014, I've told you how the Big Tech cabal – first and foremost Google – has been trying to kill off WND.

Now, as recent reports confirm, they are doing the same thing to other conservative media. You could say WND was the canary in the coal mine.

As a result, we have had to rely on reader support and prayers just to survive the continual blacklisting, censorship, cancel culture, demonetization, repression, defamation and demeaning of us, and the deprivation of our First Amendment rights.

And, of course, this sob story evolved into a money beg:

I pray every day for relief. God has provided us with daily bread as He has promised.

Government has held lots of hearings but, in the end, done nothing. And you have answered the call every time we have asked.

Still, it's been a nightmare for us.

We've lost more than 90% of our revenues since 2016. We are essentially operating on fumes.

If WND means something special to you, we continue to need your prayers and your financial blessings. While some of our friends in the independent media have billionaire patrons, you should know that we do not, and never have. We've always operated the old-fashioned way, earning our own way. We spend only what we take in through revenues and donations.

We do it because we love it. We always have. But we also love you for remembering us. Truly.

Most of all, we love God and trust Him for our daily bread.

So, please, don't forget to keep us in your prayers. We can feel their effectiveness. They give us great encouragement to keep fighting on.

These are tough and crazy times in America. I'm sure you see that. We thank you for recognizing our unique work, our determination and our fearlessness. And we thank you for yours.

Please consider helping us weather this very difficult time by making a generous tax-deductible donation to the nonprofit 501(c)(3) WND News Center.

"Unique work" is certainly one way to describe publishing fake news and conspiracy theories.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:59 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Double Standard On Media Ownership
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center loves to invent tales about the purported "left-wing" owners of certain media outlets -- but it never complains about (and actually defends) the right-wing bias of Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:33 AM EDT
Tuesday, April 18, 2023
MRC Still Attempting To Defend Fox News From Dominion Lawsuit
Topic: Media Research Center

As the Fox News-Dominion lawsuit inched closer to its scheduled trial date, the Media Research Center -- which has struggled to figure out how to defend its favorite right-wing "news" channel (when it wasn't deliberately ignoring the lawsuit, anyway) over the revelations that Fox News lied to its viewers by portrapying Donald Trump's claims of election fraud as valid when it knew they were bogus -- attemped a couple more defenses.

Jeffrey Lord spent his March 25 column rehashing a op-ed written by former Trump attorney general William Barr defending Fox News by claiming that the media should be able to "report on these matters without incurring liability for defamation because existing laws give them wide latitude to do so to encourage uninhibited discourse on matters of public concern," to which Lord harrumphed: "Exactly. They have latitude to draw conclusions based on the facts of the moment as we know them." But has the Washington Post's Aaron Blake pointed out, "there were certainly times when they went beyond treating them as 'unproven allegations' and even seemingly endorsed them."

Lord endorsed another statement by Barr, that under the "actual malice" standard established under current libel law, "a media speaker isn’t liable for defamation, even for a false statement of fact, unless he knows when he makes the statement that what he is saying is false or gravely doubts its truth." Lord added: "Again, exactly" -- but he didn't mention how it was revealed that Fox News hosts did, in fact, know the Trump campaign's claims of election fraud were bogus but they promoted the bogus claims on air anyway.

When a Fox News employee stepped forward to claim she was pressued by Fox News lawyers to lie during testimony for the Dominion lawsuit, a March 30 post portrayed her as the liar (and "disgruntled" too) while playing a lame bit of whataboutism to draw needlessly draw CNN into the picture:

As a preview to a segment that’s going to air on Thursday night’s NBC Nightly News, NBC’s Today show hyped an interview between correspondent Cynthia McFadden and a disgruntled former Fox News guest booker, Abby Grossberg. Brushing over why the behind-the-scenes employee was fired without any details, the network lionized her lawsuits against cable’s number one news station. Something they refused to do when CNN fired their primetime poster boy Chris Cuomo and he sued them for $125 million.

“This morning, we are hearing from the former Fox News producer at the center of a legal battle over Dominion Voting Systems,” co-anchor Craig Melvin announced. “Abby Grossberg is suing the network alleging that she was pressured by Fox to give misleading testimony during a deposition in the case.”

NBC presented no evidence to support Grossberg’s claims.


If a loyal NBC viewer wanted to find out anything related to why Grossberg was fired, they would need to read down to paragraph 43 (of 48 total) in their online report. “Fox fired her last week, alleging she had disclosed privileged information in her legal claims despite being warned that she was ‘not authorized to disclose it publicly,’” was all they wrote about it.

Fondacaro didn't mention the difference between the two lawsuits -- Cuomo's involved personnel matters whiile Fox News was being sued for defamation -- but he continued on the whataboutism path anyway: "What’s the difference? Fox outperforms NBC’s sister network MSNBC, while CNN is in a distant third place behind them."

He concluded by huffing: "It will be interesting to see what more NBC chooses to share on air from McFadden’s interview. And also what got left on the cutting room floor." Fibndacaro apparently found nothing objectionable (or at least nothing that could the twisted to Fox News' benefit) in the interview, because Grossberg has never been mentioned by the MRC since.

Tim Graham spent his March 31 column complaining that actual journalists called out Fox News for spreading lies:

America’s journalism elite has a nasty habit of associating journalism with liberalism. They only believe in half of a First Amendment. They don’t believe in press freedom for the conservative media...because they think those outlets should be shunned as fake-news factories.

See the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), which claims it “promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens” and “fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press.” But when it comes to Fox News, they put those ideals through a shredder.

The Dominion Voting Systems lawsuit against Fox News has become deeply embarrassing in revealing internal discussions in the weeks after the 2020 election, a tumultuous period for the leading cable-news network. The Trump army was in full cry against anyone who suggested Joe Biden had won. Fox bizarrely called Arizona for Biden before all the liberal networks did. Then they worried about their audience leaving in droves for Newsmax and OAN.

So Dominion’s lawyers have thrilled the liberal media with texts and emails showing powerful Fox people were worrying out loud about how it was “bad for business” to fact-check Trump allies. Trump lawyers were uncorking wild conspiracy theories about voting machines that they could not prove. It’s plausible to argue these flagrant theories – combined with Trump’s self-absorbed refusal to concede he lost – led to rioting at the Capitol.

This is why the SPJ did not advocate for press freedom, but slammed Fox instead: “News organizations have a fundamental obligation to be honest in the reporting and opinion they disseminate. It is unprofessional, unethical and potentially harmful for a journalist or news organization to deliberately mislead their audience, no matter the motivation or format....No responsible journalist can accept or excuse this behavior.”

Graham didn't explain why it was was "bizarre" for Fox News to call Arizona for Biden, especially given that the call was correct. He also glossed over the fact that discovery in the Dominion lawsuit showed that Fox News portrayed Trump election fraud claims as plausible when it knew they were not -- which, of course, is the reason the SPJ criticized Fox News. Instead, it was whataboutism time again:

That sounds great as a principle, but is that applied to all media outlets? Try Googling “SPJ statement on CNN” and see if you can find them ever whacking CNN for deliberately misleading their audience on anything. If someone sued CNN or NBC, do we think we would never find juicy texts like Fox’s?

We can guess liberal journalists would defend other liberal journalists on the “deliberately misleading” part of the statement. Did the SPJ ever speak out against CNN and MSNBC journalists standing in front of raging fires at big-city riots and saying it was “not unruly”? Or was that too obviously misleading to matter?

“Professional journalists” only hate Fox, apparently. On March 25, SPJ also tweeted out an article from the liberal Nieman Lab arguing Fox News was Fake News. Their tweet promoted this quote from radical journalism professor Jay Rosen: “It’s not just journalism schools — the whole journalism profession in the U.S. has been involved in this make-believe game of Fox as a normal colleague. And now it’s slowly beginning to question that.”

Again, Graham failed to mention that Fox News knew it was spreading that fake news. He concluded by dismissing Fox News critics as nothing but haters while warning about the purported dangers of the Dominion lawsuit:

The SPJ and these other Fox haters are too lost in their negative emotions to appreciate that if Fox News loses in court to Dominion, it opens the rest of the media to lawsuits whenever they pass along allegations that turn out to be false. The legal system doesn’t have a double standard on this. Only the “professional journalists” do.

Of course, one does not have to be a professional journalist to know that Fox News deliberately lied to its viewers and that it falsely smeared Dominion.

Graham wrote a column on April 14 similarly dismissing Fox News critics as  a bunch of haters:

NPR is a platform that has demonstrated an incredibly aggressive interest in undermining the credibility of Fox News Channel and the public’s understanding of how it balances out NPR’s relentless liberal bias and censorship.

NPR media reporter David Folkenflik reflects that obsession. He’s filed 13 stories attacking Fox from various angles since February 28, and he’s not the only NPR reporter dropping bombs on Murdoch's castle.

On April 13, NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross devoted an hour to New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters exploiting the negative publicity from Fox’s ongoing legal battle with Dominion Voting Systems. The suit has embarrassed Fox with all kinds of internal messages showing they didn’t believe wild conspiratorial claims of voter fraud, insisting Trump won easily.


In this anti-Fox hour, Peters underlined that Tucker Carlson is an icon of insincerity, a man who privately proclaimed hatred of Trump, but just polished Trump’s shoes in a “historic” one-hour interview. Peters said, “he thinks his audience isn’t ever going to know what he said privately because we all live in such siloed media worlds.” Conservatives are surrounded by a dominant liberal media. The idea that they know nothing about the Dominion fracas is a provocative assertion.

Graham's well-paid job is to undermine the credibilty of any media outlet who's not as far-right as he is. He's also miscontruing Peters' words about the right-wing media bubble. The issue is not that conservatives don't know about the  Dominion lawsuit, it's that they don't want to admit the truth about what had been revealed -- namely, that Fox News lied to its viewers and falsely defamed Dominion -- and they portray any negative news about Fox News as the product of a biased "liberal media," not something based in reality (as Graham has repeatedly done and is doing here).

Graham concluded with more of the same (and whataboutism too):

Peters says if Fox News loses this case, “it says that one of the most powerful media organizations in the country has to pay for the dishonest way it covered our democracy.” Peters added “I don’t know that those kinds of lessons of accountability will sink in with the average conservative.”

NPR and their liberal friends imagine conservatives are a cretinous collection of mouth-breathing dullards and conspiracy kooks. Inside their silo, they never consider that NPR could be accused of being a “powerful media organization” that can be accused of covering our democracy in a “dishonest way” in 2020. They dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop as a “pure distraction” without moving a muscle to investigate.

NPR prances about mocking Fox for supinely serving its ideologically fervent base in denial of inconvenient facts. But NPR supinely serves its own ideologically fervent base. They are icons of insincerity in claiming they’re courageously independent guardians of democracy who operate without fear or favor.

Note that Graham said absolutely nothing about Fox News needing to be held accountable for its indisputable wrongdoings. And of course, as we've pointed out, if right-wing media wanted Hunter Biden's laptop to be taken seriously before the election, they should have provided independent verification of its authenticity that would have overcome the fact that pro-Trump outlets were pushing it.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:21 PM EDT

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Buy through this Amazon link and support ConWebWatch!

Support This Site

« April 2023 »
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google